Climate and Health
Colorado’s warming climate is hazardous to our health. Extreme heat affects the human body and increases environmental perils such as air pollution, fires, and floods. Often, people with the least resources are at the highest risk for climate-related illness and death.
We need to protect people’s bodies and minds from the damaging impacts of rising temperatures. The stakes for health equity and environmental justice could not be higher. Many Coloradans whose health is likely to be affected the most by a changing climate — including children and Black, Indigenous, and Hispanic and Latino Coloradans — may already experience multiple barriers to their health and well-being.
Through Acclimate Colorado, CHI and its partners are working to bolster the resilience of Colorado communities to a warming climate by assessing local risks and strengths, aligning key players from a broad coalition of disciplines, and advancing concrete steps that local and state governments, businesses, health care providers, and community organizations should take to protect health.
CHI’s efforts will center on preventing dangerous health effects of a warming climate among those already marginalized or who have experienced the brunt of historical inequities.
We will build on Acclimate Colorado momentum by advancing the strategies laid out in its climate and health policy agenda. We will focus on identifying available resources and policy levers at the local, municipal, and state levels. We will explore how Acclimate Colorado can equip local and state governments, businesses, health care providers, and community organizations to implement climate change adaptation policies.
The Acclimate Colorado team will expand community engagement efforts and forge new partnerships with local, state, and national organizations. The initiative has been successful at partnering with thought leaders at The Denver Foundation, the Rose Community Foundation, the National Network of Public Health Institutes, Kaiser Permanente of Colorado, the Colorado Division of Insurance, and Healthy Air and Water Colorado to explore opportunities advancing adaptation work in the state. But more work is needed. The policy agenda casts a broad net of strategies and requires collective action to implement. In addition, particular areas — such as the implications of climate change and health within the realm of adaptation planning, transportation, and mental health — deserve deeper analysis to identify best practices and move policy discussions forward.
Our Work So Far
CHI continues to build on its past five years of providing evidence to drive health …….